Category Archives:
Middle East

Whistleblower: US General Sean Swindell bears responsibility for deadly Kunduz hospital attack

Wilson Dizard on
Andrew Quilty, an Australian photographer based in Afghanistan, shot pictures of the damage inside the Doctors Without Borders (Médecins Sans Frontières) hospital in Kunduz, Afghanistan after the US attack.

Unfair blame has come down on the heads of American soldiers and allied Afghan forces over an attack on a civilian hospital in Kunduz last year, while the general in charge of the mission, Major General Sean P. Swindell, faced no consequences, according to an Army officer who spoke exclusively to Mondoweiss, “I wish the general in charge was prosecuted for this, but that’s my personal opinion. He should be taking ultimate responsibility for it, since he set up the conditions that something like this would happen.”

Sharansky disses American Jews for assimilating, then tells ‘major donors’ to universities to stop BDS

Philip Weiss on
Natan Sharansky

There are times that one must look at the American Jewish community and say that it is deeply troubled, and Monday night at Temple Emanu-El’s Skirball Center was one of those times. Phil Weiss reports from Natan Sharansky’s event at the temple where the head of the of Jewish Agency repeatedly celebrated the “destruction” of Soviet Union but never referred to Palestinians and said those who support BDS are guilty of “classic anti-Semitism.” Weiss writes, “This is the state of the American Jewish establishment. It shows utter contempt for Palestinian human rights in a senior citizen prom of narcissism.”

Why Miko Peled’s story resonates for Palestinians

Hatim Kanaaneh on
Miko Peled

The General’s Son, Miko Peled’s autobiographical account of his voyage from a Zionist youth and the scion of Zionist leaders to an avowed anti-Zionist peace activist, contains trigger points for any Palestinian, bringing back experiences of violence, discrimination and oppression at every turn of the account.

The war over the meaning of the Holocaust between Netanyahu and General Golan

Yakov Hirsch on
Major General Yair Golan, deputy commander of Israeli armed forces

When he urged Jews to reflect on the meaning of the Holocaust in the wake of the murder of a Palestinian on the ground by an Israeli medic, Israeli General Yair Golan issued a historical challenge to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his propagandists in the west: that the use of the Holocaust to justify slaughter of enemies is bringing Israeli society to a point of no return

Zionism threatens to bring anti-semitism full-circle

Jonathan Ofir on
David Ben-Gurion during the playing of the Hatikva at the opening session of Israeli Knesset, 1949

If all Jews must be identified by an inevitable connection to Israel, as the state seeks, then it may be that Israel, and its actions in the eyes of the world, will become their greatest peril.

Resolution 242 does not mean what you may think it means

David Gerald Fincham on
Mandelbaum Gate on 1949 armistice line in East Jerusalem

The Green Line established in 1949 in Israel and Palestine and affirmed in UN Resolution 242 in 1967 was never intended as a permanent border, writes scholar Gerald David Fincham. And it should not be, because a 78% to 22% division of territory between Jews and Arabs is unfair.

‘Either Assad or we’ll burn the country’ – An excerpt from ‘Burning Country: Syrians in Revolution and War’

Robin Yassin-Kassab and Leila Al-Shami on
Cover of Burning Country: Syrians in Revolution and War

Read an an excerpt from the new book ‘Burning Country: Syrians in Revolution and War’ by Robin Yassin-Kassab and Leila Al-Shami. The book tells the story of how Syrians took to the streets in 2011 to demand the overthrow of Bashar al-Assad’s regime, and the political and humanitarian nightmare still unfolding today. This excerpt explores how the regime responded with overwhelming violence to the initial non-violent protests, and the choices facing grassroots activists as the revolution militarized.

Once, most Jews viewed Israel as the anti-semite’s best friend

Jonathan Cook on
Edwin Montagu (Photo: Wikipedia)

Recognising Zionism’s ideological roots, inspired by racial theories of peoplehood that in part fueled the Second World War, might allow us to understand modern Israel a little better. And why it seems incapable of extending a hand of peace to the Palestinians.

Miko Peled’s viral video

Yakov Hirsch on
Miko Peled

How does this Miko Peled video get 2.7 million views– how is that possible? This isn’t a puppy or music video. Because Muslims want to see a beautiful Israeli Jew discuss his country honestly.

An apologia for Ken Livingstone (What would Buber say?)

Roland Nikles on
Howard Jacobson

The flap over anti-Zionism in British Labour ranks reveals the degree to which Zionism, or Jewish nationalism in Palestine, which depends on anti-Semitism, has replaced Torah, God, and peoplehood as the definition of Jewishness in European and American Jewish communities.

DC meeting between Israel and Saudi Arabia marks end of Arab Peace Initiative and two-state solution

Raed Jarrar and Alli McCracken on
Retired major general in the Saudi armed forces, Anwar Eshki, left, and former Israeli ambassador Dore Gold shake hands at a Council on Foreign Relations event, as Elliott Abrams looks on. (Photo: CFR)

The Iran nuclear deal and the war in Syria are bringing together unexpected bedfellows: Saudi Arabia and Israel. On May 5 in Washington DC Prince Turki bin Faisal and retired Israeli Defense Forces Major General Yaakov Amidror will meet under the auspices of the AIPAC-affiliated Washington Institute for Near East Policy, signaling a new era of normalization by the official sponsor of the Arab Peace Initiative.

Note to Ken Livingstone: The British Labour party has supported Zionism much more than the Nazis ever did

Nu'man Abd al-Wahid on
Ken Livingstone (Photo: Rob Stothard/Getty Images)

The recent remarks of the former mayor of London, Ken Livingstone has ignited a debate on the extent of anti-Semitism in the British Labour Party. In support of another British Labour politician, Naz Shah, Livingstone felt compelled to remind people that certain Zionists in 1930’s Nazi Germany came into an agreement with elements in the Nazi regime to transfer German Jews to Palestine. Why he needed to drag this minor episode of European Zionist history, the Haavara agreement, into the mix in a supposed defense of Shah is bewildering. More bewildering when one considers the fact that British imperialism was the most consequential partner to the Zionist colonial settler project in Palestine in the inter-war period.

Woman and child killed in Iraq as US adopts Israeli ‘knocker’ bombs and leaflet drops

Allison Deger on
A burned Humvee and artillery are seen at the peshmerga base in Makhmour, after it was freed from control of Islamic State, south of Mosul, April 17, 2016. (Photo: Ahmed Jadallah/Reuters)

American forces have adopted Israeli military tactics employed in Gaza of dropping cautionary leaflets and knocker bombs intended to warn civilians of incoming attacks. The method was used outside of Mosul in a recent operation, yet a woman and a child were killed upon re-entering a building shortly after it was targeted by a hellfire missile. The deaths were disclosed by a Department of Defense official in a briefing yesterday on expanding U.S. forces in Iraq as it battles fighters with the Islamic State.

American University of Beirut students protest in support of Steven Salaita as school president intervenes to cancel hiring process

Students for Salaita on
#StudentsforSalaita logo

Students at the American University of Beirut have been organizing on campus since AUB President Fadlo Khuri canceled the hiring of Professor Steven Salaita based on accusations of ‘procedural irregularities’ during the hiring process. As a #StudentsforSalaita press release explained, “Students are concerned this controversy follows Salaita’s persecution at UIUC, as well as the changing perspectives within the administration on the legitimacy of pro-Palestinian scholars.”

‘Say Hello to Zenobia’: A report from Palmyra rising from the ashes

Jeff Klein on
A photo of the Temple of Bel taken on March 14, 2014, in front of the remains of the historic temple. The monument was destroyed by Islamic State jihadists in October 2015. This photo was taken by Joseph Eid for AFP, all other photos for this story are by the author or other members of the delegation.

Jeff Klein reports on the horrific devastation left in the wake of the ISIS occupation of the world-famous ancient city of Palmyra and the neighboring Syrian town of Tadmor. He traveled there with a delegation that was the very first group of international civilians to view the site in the aftermath of the battle that took place there.

Israeli forces have killed over 5,500 Palestinians in the last 15 years and not one soldier has been prosecuted for murder

Allison Deger on
Israeli Defense Forces on patrol. (Photo: IDF)

Israeli soldiers are almost never prosecuted for killings in the occupied Palestinian territory, the Israeli human rights group Yesh Din said yesterday. Over the past 15 years no Israeli officers were indicted for murder, and only one soldier was convicted of homicide in the case of the killing of a foreign national. During this time Israeli forces killed more than 5,500 Palestinians and ten foreign nationals in the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem.

Zionism is not really secular

Jonathan Ofir on
David Ben-Gurion

Zionism took the myth of the ‘Jewish nation’ from Jewish religious culture. It extrapolated the nationalist stream inherent in Judaism, and made it into an ostensibly ‘secular’ national movement. But the nationalist element depends upon the religious ‘counterpart’ to exist.